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ECOFACT ECOFACT | Mammal Protection Legislation | Derogation Liciences

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Terrestrial mammal legislation and derogation licences

ECOFACT staff are experts in relation to surveys, protection legislation, derogation licences and impact assessment and mitigation for terrestrial mammals.  Terrestrial mammal protection legislation for both Ireland and Northern Ireland is outlined below.

  • In Ireland the Wildlife Act, 1976 and the Wildlife Amendment Act, 2000 are the principal statutory provisions providing for the protection of Wildlife (both Flora and Fauna) and the control of activities which may impact adversely on the conservation of Wildlife.
  • In Northern Ireland, the main legislation is contained in the Wildlife (Northern Ireland) Order 1985 (as amended), the Nature Conservation and Amenity Lands (Northern Ireland) Order 1995,  and The Environment (Northern Ireland) Order 2002.

Certain mammal species (i.e. Otter and Lesser Horseshoe bat) are also listed on Annex II of the EU Habitats Directive (1992) and are afforded further protection. The domestic legislation that implements this Directive gives strict protection to individual bats and their breeding and resting places. Bat species are also protected under the Bonn Convention and the Bern Convention (Appendix II).

  • In Ireland the European Communities (Birds and Natural Habitats) Regulations (2011)  consolidate the European Communities (Natural Habitats) Regulations 1997 to 2005 and the European Communities (Birds and Natural Habitats)(Control of Recreational Activities) Regulations 2010.
  • The Conservation (Natural Habitats and Habitats of Species) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 1995 (as amended) transpose the Habitats Directive in relation to Northern Ireland.

All bat species, along with otter are also listed on Annex IV of the EU Habitats Directive. The national legislation that implements this directive gives strict protection to Annex IV species and their breeding and resting places.

Where a proposed development will affect a site known to be used by such species, consideration needs to be given to the likely impact on the population. Article 16 of the Habitats Directive provides for derogation licences to be issued  “provided there is no satisfactory alternative and the derogation is not detrimental to the maintenance of the populations of the species concerned at a favourable conservation status“.

For more information on protected terrestrial mammal species in Ireland, please click here.

Our staff have extensive experience in advising on, and making the preparations necessary to secure derogation licences.

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